Jefferson, Georgia

Jackson County:
1999 Top Town Stories of the Year

JANUARY
·The Arcade City Council began moving forward with plans to bring zoning to the small south Jackson County town. Four members of the town council met with officials with the Northeast Regional Development Center to make preliminary plans. Public hearings and council meetings will be held before any action is taken.
·Jackson County officials were on a heightened alert following several area arson blazes, one of which killed a firefighter in neighboring Banks County on New Year's Eve. New Salem United Methodist Church, located near Commerce, was destroyed in the arson.
·Panther Creek Subdivision residents once again attended a meeting of the Hoschton City Council to discuss problems with sewage in the development. City officials reported that they were in the middle of applying for loans and grants to overhaul the subdivision's sewage system.
·Power outages were reported across South Jackson, with more than 3,300 homes being out of service for several hours.
·The Maysville Town Council approved a $301,300 budget, up one percent over last year.
·A movement to allow local students to get credit for out-of-school religious instruction was launched as representatives from some 20 churches met to discuss the idea.
·Rep. Scott Tolbert released his proposal for a bill that would allow voters to decide whether or not to change the county government from a three-member at-large board of commissioners with a full-time chairman to a five-member board with a hired county manager. Voters would decide the issue in a November referendum and, if approved, it would become effective for the 2000 elections.
·Despite published reports in an Atlanta publication, Buckhead International has not sold its Jackson County property where Mulberry Plantation will be located. Developer Doug Elam said Buckhead is talking with several golf developers to select one to work with on the project, but that the company planned to stay involved with the project.
·An effort to increase minimum lot sizes to one house per acre for many unincorporated subdivisions fell short but a new wrinkle in the county's zoning codes was adopted that would cap a project's overall density.
·The Jackson County Board of Education agreed to pursue a bus maintenance contract with the Jefferson City school system.
·Jefferson Blanking made plans to double its facility located at Walnut Fork Industrial Park in Jefferson.
·The Jefferson City Council agreed to waive the health department water tap-on fee for the new facility located on Darnell Road in Jefferson. The move was an effort to improve the city's working relationship with the county.
·Scott Martin was named to serve on the Jackson County Industrial Development Author-ity.
·Plans were revealed at a meeting of the Jefferson Board of Education for a new facility to house grades six through eight. The BOE plans to apply for grants and state funding for a middle school program.
·Jefferson BOE discussed changing its school calendar to have students return to classes in early August.
·Rep. Scott Tolbert explained his proposed restructuring of county government in two public meetings. A map of the proposed districts was also presented.
·Rep. Scott Tolbert was named the House deputy whip.
·Negotiations to bring a $400 million power plant to the South Jackson area continued. The Southern Company and Dynegy were both considering locating in Jackson County.
·Pendergrass mayor Mark Tolbert proposed a joint police department with the City of Talmo. No action was taken, but the matter was discussed at a Pendergrass City Council meeting.
·A compromise was in the works on Rep. Scott Tolbert's county government change legislation. The district plan came under fire from two county commissioners who want all commissioners to be voted on at large. Tolbert and Sen. Eddie Madden looked at the bill to allow voters to decide on this issue.
·Jackson Electric Membership Corporation leaders announced plans to build a three-unit, 15 megawatt gas turbine power plant at its substation at Louisiana Pacific to use during peak times.
·Family Dollar held a grand opening celebration at its new facility in Jefferson.
·After receiving an opinion from the Georgia Municipal Association, Pendergrass mayor Mark Tolbert said he would not pursue a $4,800 salary the council approved in November. The GMA said that a city council cannot vote to raise current salaries for itself or the mayor.
·Jackson County leaders moved forward on revamping the county zoning ordinances. A meeting was held with a planner with the Northeast Georgia Regional Development Center to begin the process.
·The Hoschton City Council began preliminary work on upgrading the city's subdivision regulations, a process that members anticipate will be fairly lengthy and will require assistance from the Rural Development Commission and an assessment of county and state regulations.
·The Pendergrass City Council approved a $108,800 budget for 1999, up $68,000 over the previous year.
·Jackie Tolbert was named chairman of the Jackson County Industrial Development Author-ity.
FEBRUARY
·Sheryl Ann Gossitt, 30, Banks County, was charged with the murder of Kimberly Ann Warren.
·Wal-Mart leaders looked at a tract of land at Banks Crossing to locate a "super store." If this opens at the Banks County location, the Jackson County store would close.
·Jackson County Board of Commissioners members visited a power plant in Warner Robins similar to one that The Southern Company is looking at locating in Center.
·Zoning was approved by the Arcade City Council. A zoning ordinance and district map was approved.
·The Arcade City Council approved a $868,150 budget.
·Maysville mayor Richard Presley opened the city council meeting by reading a statement on public conduct at meetings. He said they should be "orderly" with no profanity. A police officer was also present to remove anyone who refused to follow the guidelines.
·Plans for a new post office in Maysville were revealed at a meeting with representatives of the United States Postal Service.
·After months of negotiations, the Jackson County Board of Education finalized the purchase of land for a new elementary school in the West Jackson area. A 27-acre tract across Hwy. 53 from the current Jackson County Elementary School was purchased for $750,000. The new facility on that site will house grades three through five for the West Jackson area, while the existing school will become a primary school housing grades kindergarten through second.
·With only a handful of people expressing opposition at a public meeting, the Jefferson City School System appears ready to proceed with a major change in its school year. The plan would have school begin August 6 and end in mid-May.
·Officials with the town of Braselton agreed to take legal action against 14 companies which have not purchased a business license from the city.
·Keeping in tune with the recent adoption of zoning ordinances, the Arcade City Council unanimously decided to have the Northeast Georgia Regional Development Center (RDC) rewrite the city's subdivision ordinances.
·"Teachers of the Year" from each Jackson County school were named as follows: William Barnett, Benton Elementary; Debra Stewart, Jackson County Comprehensive High; Lisa Bennett, North Jackson Elementary; Betty Cooper, West Jackson Middle and system teacher of the year; Susan Redmon, Maysville Elementary; Beth Calhoun, South Jackson Elementary; Rhonda Whiting, Jackson County Elementary; and Catherine Sims, East Jackson Middle.
·Miramax Films, a Disney-owned company, has finalized a deal with the family of Major Damon Gause to produce the film version of his World War II adventure in the Pacific. The family earlier inked a book deal with Hyperion Publishing, Disney's publishing company, to publish the book, "The War Journal," based on Gause's diary.
·For four percent of a projected $26 million in income, roughly $1 million, the Jackson County Firefighters' Association virtually promised to deliver more than 1,200 "Yes" votes later this year to renew a special purpose local option sales tax.
·Jefferson students will have a short summer vacation this year following action by the Jefferson Board of Education. In a move that had been discussed for several weeks, the BOE approved a new school year calendar that will have students back in school on August 6, finished with the first semester before Christmas break and out of school in mid-May.
·Troy Lee Griffith has been ordered to reimburse the Georgia Environmental Protec-tion Division $1 million for the clean-up of a hazardous site on property he owned.
·Gerald "Pepe" Cummings was named CEO of the chamber of Commerce. His $60,000 salary will be funded partially by the chamber and partially by the board of commissioners.
·Zaxby's broke ground on a new restaurant in Jefferson.
·Vandalism to Jackson County and Commerce water lines caused the loss of millions of gallons of water in the two systems and reduced fire protection to dangerous levels throughout the county.
·Plans were made to form the Jefferson Historic Inc. organization to preserve the town's historic environment and to promote tourism.
·Charles Blair was named to another five-year term on the BJC Medical Authority board of directors.
·The Pendergrass City Council made plans to update its zoning map and implement subdivision regulations.
MARCH
·A proposed amendment to the Jackson County sign ordinance to allow more billboards along I-85 was tabled by the planning commission. The proposal was presented by a private billboard company.
·The House of Living Hope was established in Jackson County as a refuge for teens recovering from substance abuse and families in need of a safe haven.
·Scott Harper was named to serve on the Maysville fire board.
·A travel center was planned at Exit 52 in Maysville.
·Bassett-Walker announced plans to close its Commerce plant.
·Ron Bond was re-appointed chairman of the Jefferson Industrial Authority.
·A bill calling for a referendum on changing Jackson County's government structure cleared the Georgia General Assembly.
·A group of ministers approached the Jackson County Board of Education about plans to establish an off-campus "release-time" Christian education program near Jackson County Comprehensive High School. No action was taken, but the BOE asked for a proposal.
·The Jackson County Water and Sewerage Authority and BOC approved a contract with Georgia Power to locate a combustion turbine power plant in Center.
·Mercedes-Freightliner closed the deal on the purchase of a tract of property in Jefferson to locate a new semi-truck dealership.
·All building inspections and permits for new development in Arcade will be handled by the Jackson County Planning Commission following the approval of zoning in the town.
·Jennifer White was named principal of North Jackson Elementary School to replace Vic Stewart, who is retiring.
·The Georgia Department of Transportation requested $1 million from Jackson County for moving water lines for the Pendergrass and Jefferson bypass projects. The water authority members refused to foot the bill and the board of commissioners planned a meeting with the DOT to discuss the matter further.
·Commerce leaders asked for county funds for its town recreation department at a meeting to discuss House Bill 489, which calls for cities to consolidate duplicated services.
·The Jackson County Fireman's Association backed away from a political showdown over a planned sales tax vote. Jackson County Area Chamber of Commerce chairman Richard Cathey said that members of the fire board told him that there is no threat implied of their lack of support if the tax funds do not go toward building a fire training center.
·The various government agencies in Jackson County will split some $316,000 in old sales tax money that Banks Crossing retail businesses sent to the wrong county.
·An investigator with the Georgia Department of Public Safety found that Arcade is not operating a speed trap. Police Chief Dennis Bell received a letter from Col. Sid Miles of the state agency stating that he found a report of a speed trap being operated in the city to be inaccurate.
·An effort to bring more billboards to I-85 hit a roadblock when the Jackson County Planning Commission recommended denial of a proposed ordinance to ease regulations. The Jackson County Board of Commissioners will take final action on the proposal.
·The Braselton Town Council approved changes to the town's zoning ordinance to allow the council to handle rezoning requests on its own rather than relying on the Jackson County Planning Commission.
·Baker and Taylor Books announced plans to double the size of its Commerce distribution center. The company plans to add 100,000 square feet of capacity to the center.
·The city of Braselton received a $1.28 million grant from the United States Department of Agriculture to improve the city's water system.
·Rep. Scott Tolbert secured $10,000 in state funds for the Jefferson Fire Department and $20,000 for Commerce High School.
·The paving of a Pendergrass parking lot is at the center of a $19,000 dispute between the city government and county officials. Town leaders thought the parking lot could be paved with funds from its special purpose local option sales tax, but county officials ruled that the money could only be used for roads, streets and bridges, not parking areas.
APRIL
·Jackson County superintendent Andy Byers recommended that teachers involved in remedial instruction return to school to obtain a "reading specialist certificate." The plan, called the "School Improvement Initi-ative," requires teachers in Title I, remedial and Special Instruction Assistance programs to obtain a reading specialist degree. Classes will be paid for by the school.
·The Jackson County Board of Education agreed to pursue the purchase of land near East Jackson Middle School for an elementary facility to relieve overcrowding at Benton Elementary School.
·Plans for a new courthouse in Jackson County will apparently be scaled back from original designs that had called for a 102,000-square-foot facility at a projected cost of $11 million to $16 million. The board of commissioners allotted 20 percent, a projected $7 million, from a planned special purpose local option sales tax to go toward the courthouse project.
·Judge Penn McWhorter ruled in favor of Bobby and Russell Murphy, who filed a lawsuit against the county after their requests to subdivide land were denied in April 1998 by the planning commission.
·The Hoschton City Council lifted a moratorium for locating on-premise signs in the city.
·Cities in the county which have a police department looked at a plan to add a 10 percent fee to fines to cover the cost of housing inmates at the county jail.
·An oversight by the Jackson County Planning Commission in 1998 led to Nicholson losing its "qualified local government" status. The county didn't forward information to the town on the state-mandated wetlands protection ordinance. The council agreed to hold a public hearing on the matter and take action on the proposed ordinance.
·The Jackson County Board of Commissioners agreed to a settlement in a lawsuit filed by Harold Beck over last year's denial of his request to rezone a 275-acre tract on Old King's Bridge Road from A-2 to A-R to build a subdivision. The county agreed to rezone the property within 30 days. Judge David Motes also ruled that the attorney fees for Beck would be paid by the county.
·The Georgia Department of Transportation agreed to pay for the relocation of most county water lines affected by the Jefferson and Pendergrass bypasses.
·The Jackson County Board of Commissioners decided to leave Academy Church Road open after hearing a plea from a member of the church. Martin Marietta, which has a facility on the road, had asked that it be closed.
·Before Jackson County voters go to the polls to decide whether to change their form of government, the United States Justice Department will decide if one of the options-the election of all five county commissioners at large-is in violation of the Voting Rights Act.
·Braselton was cited by the Georgia Department of Audits and Accounts for not submitting an audit for 1997 and 1998.
·Wal-Mart purchased land to locate a "Super Store" at Banks Crossing. Leaders said this would most likely lead to the closing of the Commerce store.
·Sealing the cracks in the runway and improving lighting are among the projects planned at the Jackson County Airport. The Jackson County Airport Authority agreed to take bids on the two projects.
·The Jackson County BOC said "No" to a proposal to expand the county's correctional institute to hold 70 additional inmates.
·Cathy Johnson was named head of the county tax assessor's office.
·A Jackson County woman and the City of Pendergrass settled a dispute over her plans to locate a subdivision in the town. A hearing was scheduled in Jackson County Superior Court over the lawsuit filed against the city by Elaine Watson, but attorneys for the two parties negotiated the matter in the hallway and agreed to settle before the hearing began.
MAY
·Sheryl Gossitt was found guilty of murder in the Dec. 8, 1998, slaying of Kimberly Warren. She was sentenced to life in prison.
·Braselton was listed as one of the sites being considered for the new headquarters for the Atlanta Falcons.
·The Jackson County Human Resources Council asked for funds from the county board of commissioners to help fund school nurses. No action was taken.
·The county agreed to allocate $10,500 to Commerce next year for its city recreation department. The compromise was a result of state-mandated shared service agreements. The actual amount the city receives each year will vary based on changes in the county's recreation budget and changes in the amount of ad valorem taxes paid by Commerce residents as a percentage of the entire county general fund budget.
·The Nicholson City Council agreed to draft a zoning ordinance.
·ConAgra met with the Jackson County Industrial Development Authority to negotiate a site in the East Jackson Industrial Park for a new facility.
·The Hoschton City Council adopted a development handbook and developer and builder fees. The action followed several months of study.
·The Braselton Town Council agreed to look into an agreement with the Jackson County Water and Sewerage Authority allowing them to buy water when needed.
·Plans were announced that an estimated $12 million would be spent on improvements to the two Braselton interstate exits-possibly by the year's end.
·The town of Braselton received the "Rehabilitation Award" from the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation for its restoration and use of the W.H. Braselton home as city hall.
·Site preparation began for a travel center to be built just off of I-85 at Exit 52, near Commerce.
·Forrest Hagan was named to serve on the BJC Medical Center Authority.
·QuikTrip Corporation made plans to construct a Quik'n Tasty distribution center in Jefferson.
·GM looked at Braselton as the possible site for a supply firm. A development also began to locate a shopping center with a grocery store.
·Two home invasions were reported in Jackson County. In one incident, an intruder stabbed a man and stole cash from his home. In the other incident, two men with guns entered a Jefferson home and demanded money.
·A state effort to force local governments to work closer together has instead led to a standoff in Jackson County. With a June 1 deadline on the horizon, the Jackson County BOC balked on signing one state-mandated shared service agreement, saying it wouldn't OK the document until Jefferson officials lowered water rates charged to the county government. The city at first said it wouldn't do this, but later held a called meeting to lower the rates.
·The Jackson County BOE approved a plan that would allow five area systems to pool resources and house an alternative school at the Gordon Street Center in Jefferson. The school will be ready for fall.
·A bomb threat was reported at Jefferson Middle School. No bomb was found, and an 11-year-old was charged in the incident.
·A Jefferson organization's quest for a $2,000 state grant ended when officials said the city is no longer a "qualified city government." The town lost this status when it failed to approve a state-mandated wetlands ordinance. Town leaders said they would work to correct the problem.
·Reversing a decision it made two months ago, the Jackson County Airport Authority temporarily approved a request from a group of pilots who want to practice their aerobatics routine at the Lyle Field Road facility.
·Jackson County Board of Commissioners chairman Jerry Waddell and mayors from the county's towns met to sign off on state-mandated shared service agreements. All of the contracts except for water were approved by the BOC.
·James R. Holder and Jean P. Totten filed a lawsuit against the Jackson County Board of Commissioners over a rezoning decision made in April. The BOC denied Holder's request to rezone 25 acres on Hwy. 441 and Hwy. 334 from A-3 to B-2 for business and commercial use.
·Hoyt Smith filed a lawsuit against the City of Nicholson and Lester Beauchamp over a disagreement over a exactly where Church Street ends in the town.
·Ralph Ash filed a lawsuit against the county BOC over the conditions of a road. He asked that the county maintain the road.
JUNE
·Sen. Eddie Madden was named to a newly-formed state education commission.
·Members of the Humane Society of Jackson County appeared before the board of commissioners to ask that an animal control ordinance be established. No action was taken.
·The board of commissioners and Jefferson City Council both approved water agreements as required by the state-mandated shared service agreement.
·The Talmo City Council approved a bid from a private garbage hauler to provide curbside pick-up service in the town.
·A crowd of local and state officials and area business leaders met at a ribbon-cutting ceremony alongside Hwy. 129 to officially dedicate the newly-constructed Hwy. 129/I-85 interchange.
·The BOC committed $250,000 to do a complete re-evaluation of property values in Jackson County.
·The Jefferson City Council agreed on a $2.1 million financing package to build and equip two new fire stations in the city. The main fire station will be located next to the city hall on Athens Street and a satellite station will be built north of town on Hwy. 129.
·The Jackson County BOE agreed to purchase almost 100 acres near East Jackson Middle School for future development. The property, which is located on the corner of Hoods Mill Road and Waterworks Road, will likely be used for an elementary school to relieve crowding at Benton Elementary School.
·The Arcade City Council received a $9,600 grant to build new facilities at the Arcade Park.
·A Walton County jury found Donnie Lance of Pendergrass guilty of the murder of his ex-wife, Joy Lance, and her boyfriend, Butch Wood. The trial took almost two weeks and was held in Monroe after a judge approved the request for a change of venue due to the publicity of the case. Lance was given a death sentence, which he later appealed.
·Water Wise closed on the purchase of the old Jefferson Mills sewage treatment plant in Jefferson. This was the first effort by a private firm to locate a sewage system in the county.
JULY
·An apparent struggle over funding led to the shutdown of the Jackson County Correctional Institute's firefighting group. Warden Joe Dalton said he stopped dispatching the prison crew after county commissioners told him his overtime budget was too high. The matter was later settled and the prison crew again began responding to fire calls as needed.
·Emily Romfh filed a lawsuit against the Jackson County Board of Commissioners over the rezoning of 196.9 acres on McNeal Road from A-2 to R-1 for a 189-home subdivision.
·Final plans for a proposed courthouse annex were presented to the county BOC, but financing for the $11 million project wasn't finalized. The courthouse committee, appointed by the BOC to look into the matter, presented its plans for the facility.
·The county received a $500,000 state grant to fund a new mental health facility to be located near the new health department on Darnell Road in Jefferson.
·The Jefferson BOE decided to look into a uniform dress code after receiving a letter in support of such a move by a group of Jefferson parents.
·The City of Jefferson received a request to fund a new position at the Crawford W. Long Museum. The museum board asked for approximately $20,000 to help fund one-third of the cost of the salary and benefits for a director. Museum director Priscilla Daves, current chairman of the museum board, agreed to take the position.
·The Town of Pendergrass made a move to get into the sewage business by contracting with Water Wise, the private company which purchased the former Jefferson Mills sewage plant. The council agreed to a deal with the private firm for sewage treatment services for businesses and residents on Hwy. 129 and 332. The firm also agreed to provide funds to build ball fields and playgrounds at its facility in Pendergrass.
·The three Superior Court judges serving Jackson County ordered the board of commissioners to provide up to $200,000 for a public defender's office.
·Pendergrass approved a $400 per month salary for its mayor. The salary will go into effect beginning in January.
·In a 4-1 vote, the Jefferson City Council agreed to provide benefits this year and funds next year for the new position at the Crawford W. Long Museum.
·The county BOC voted in an emergency meeting to condemn the Texfi sewage plant in Jefferson that had been purchased in July by Water Wise. The Jefferson City Council and the Jackson County Water and Sewerage Authority joined in the effort which halted Water Wise's request from the Georgia Environmental Protection Division for a water treatment permit.
AUGUST
·The Town of Pendergrass filed a motion to stop the county condemnation of Water Wise Inc.'s sewage plant in Jefferson by claiming the property really belongs to the city.
·A state report cited BJC Nursing Home for its "poor service and uncleanness." Officials at the nursing home said they plan to contest the report.
·A plan was released by Hoschton officials for a new sewage system at Panther Creek.
·The EPD delayed granting a water treatment permit to Water Wise until a condemnation lawsuit on the sewage plant in Jefferson is settled.
·County firemen appeared before the county BOC to ask for a portion of the proposed special purpose local option sales tax to construct a local training facility. No action was taken.
·Talks between county officials and representatives of Water Wise Inc. began as the two attempted to settle condemnation lawsuit of a sewage plant in Jefferson. The county offered the company $1.5 million for the plant, but company officials said they had already invested over $3.6 million in the project.
·Jackson County BOC chairman Jerry Waddell was charged with driving under the influence of intoxicants after wrecking his county car on Hwy. 332. Waddell was charged after refusing to take a DUI test. He reportedly wrecked after swerving to miss a deer in the roadway.
·The BOC set the SPLOST formula as follows: water/sewer, 70 percent; roads, 23 percent, recreation, 5.5 percent, and fire training, 1.5 percent. A vote was set for Nov. 2 on the proposed one-cent sales tax.
·The low bid for a water treatment plant for the Upper Oconee Basin Authority came in at $28.4 million. The reservoir, to be located in Jackson County, will be shared by Jackson, Barrow, Oconee and Clarke counties. Clarke County will not need a share of the water treatment plant.
·Maysville City Council member Kristy Cannon said she would resign her council seat as of Labor Day because she planned to move out of the city.
·The Jackson County Airport Authority asked the county industrial development authority to work on a joint industrial development project near the current airport. No action was taken, but both sides appeared receptive to the plans.
SEPTEMBER
·The Jefferson Board of Education agreed to have architects draft preliminary plans for expanding Jefferson Elementary School and to build a new 24-classroom middle school. Also being considered is a new gym and athletic facility.
·Having presented its defense and straightened up all of the problems found by a team of state inspectors, BJC Nursing Home was in compliance with state regulations.
·A 16-year-old boy was killed and four others were injured when a pickup truck collided head-on with a Jackson County school bus.
·The cities of Hoschton and Braselton began discussing a proposed deal to share sewage and water services.
·Piedmont Judicial Circuit Superior Court judges made preparations to ask that the Georgia Supreme Court approve an appointed panel indigent defense system for Jackson County. The move comes after several weeks of controversy between the judges and the BOC over how money should be allocated for indigent defense in the county.
·A year after a controversy that lead to a shake-up in the county tax assessor's office, the Georgia Department of Revenue approved Jackson County's tax digest for 1998.
·The dilemma over how indigent defense is to be handled in Jackson County was settled following a proposal from current public defender Donna Avans. The plan calls for the county to provide $163,000 a year to cover the costs for a public defender, an assistant and a part-time receptionist and operating expenses. Avans agreed to serve again under this proposal.
·Jackson County filed a lawsuit against the City of Pendergrass for breach of contract. The county alleges that in pursuing a deal with Water Wise for sewage treatment, Pendergrass violated agreements signed under HB 489. The county also filed a lawsuit alleging that Pendergrass violated the Georgia Open Meetings Law in having mayor Mark Tolbert sign a trust indenture agreement for Water Wise Inc. to acquire the old Texfi/Jefferson Mills sewage plant in Jefferson.
·The county BOC agreed to seek bids for an architectural design for a new courthouse.
OCTOBER
·A Gainesville taxi driver was stabbed and stoned in North Jackson and three people were charged in connection with the incident.
·A Jefferson man was charged with murder in a shooting in Jefferson.
·Faye Griffin was named to serve on the Jackson County Planning Commission.
·A young girl was killed in Arcade when attempting to catch a school bus. She was struck by a hit-and-run driver who was later arrested.
·A book on the World War II adventure of Jefferson's Major Damon "Rocky" Gause was published. His son, Damon Lance Gause of Jefferson, went on a whirlwind book tour to Washington, D.C., and New York to promote the book.
·The Jefferson BOE approved a design for a new middle school. No action was taken on where to put it or how to finance it.
·A special master ruled that Jackson County pay Water Wise Inc. $1.478 million for the Texfi/Jefferson Mills sewage plant in Jefferson. The special master also ruled that Pendergrass had no standing in the case. Both Pendergrass and Water Wise appealed the rulings.
NOVEMBER
·Jackson County voters approved a five-member board of commissioners and a SPLOST for water/sewer, roads, recreation and a fire training facility.
·Jefferson voters approved a referendum on the sale of alcohol by the drink.
·Jim Joiner was elected to the Jefferson City Council. Genoria Bridgeman, Paul Turman and Rosemary Bagwell were elected to the Hoschton City Council.
·The Georgia EPD issued an order that the Hoschton City Council "take whatever actions are necessary to immediately stop discharges and to install an adequate gravity flow system and lift station to serve residents in Panther Creek Subdivision within 90 days." The council immediately voted to apply for state funds from three sources to fix the problems at Panther Creek.
·Another child was hit in an early morning accident while waiting for a school bus. A car struck the third grader, who suffered a broken leg in the accident.
·The Braselton Town Council annexed 1,200 acres for a residential and commercial development by Chateau Elan.
·Jefferson School Board leaders said a bond referendum would likely be called in March to fund the construction of a new middle school.
·Two developers filed a lawsuit against the county BOC over zoning decisions. Doug Elam of Buckhead Development filed a lawsuit against the county for refusing to approve his request for smaller lots in the Mulberry Plantation project on Hwy. 124. Millard Bowen of Simonton Road Partner